Giving Dog Medication
Sometimes giving dog medication isn’t easy but there are ways to get them to take their dose.
My dog is old and a picky piglet. I know that is an oxymoron but he truly is. If he likes something he will gobble it down but if it’s something he needs to eat like his pills it’s another story.
He loves his monthly heart worm for dogs, I’m not sure what they put in those things but it must taste yummy because he always looks for more. It’s a rectangle pellet that is soft and looks kind of like candy.
Picky old dog
Basil is old so he also needs canine arthritis supplements, urinary incontinence pills as well as his flea and tick tablets. I tried wrapping them in lunch meat, which worked for a while but then he got wise and ate around the medicine leaving a wet gross mess on the floor.
Eventually I ground them up with a mortar and pestle mixing it in people food like rice with chicken or shrimp and vegetables. The problem is he’s a Boston terrier and it doesn’t take much food to fill him up so he started getting overweight. A fat dog is not healthy so I knew I was going to have to try something else. I was giving him pet meds to improve his life and help him live longer but turning him into an overweight pet was not helping that goal. He started grunting and waddling around like a slug.
He was having more gas and intestinal issues due to being fat and he became constipated.
His pills are all chewable and have a flavor to them so they are supposed to taste good. I wasn’t brave enough to find out what they tasted like but decided enough was enough, he was going to take his meds without food.
Giving dogs too much people food doesn’t give them the vitamins they need. A good dog food has added vitamins and minerals they need to stay healthy. When they fill up on people food they don’t eat enough of their dog food to get these vitamins. Some people feed their animals people food all of the time and don’t buy pet food which is okay as long as they also give them supplements to give them the needed nutrition.
Old dog new trick
In the wild, dogs go for long periods of time without eating. Mr. Fatty had stored up enough padding that I was certain he wasn’t going to starve anytime soon. So I put his food up on the counter (normally he has access to dog food all day) and put only his pills in his bowl each morning. There are two larger tablets about the size of my thumbnail and three small ones that are about the size of an English pea.
He ate his arthritis prevention pill right away but left the other four waiting for me to put something better tasting in his bowl. I waited too.
To be honest with you, I’m a softy and wouldn’t have made him go too long without food but luckily the first day he ate the rest of his medication by 2:00 p.m. The next day he ate them by noon. And by the fourth day he was taking his pills by 10:00 a.m.
As reward I put his food bowl down as soon as I noticed he finished his pills.
Many American dogs are overweight
Canine obesity is a big problem in America. We over indulge our pets causing them to be overweight shortening their life.
In the wild, dogs go days and sometimes weeks without food so they store up as much as they can when it’s available. Domesticated pets don’t have that worry but instinct still tells them to feast while it’s here in case of famine. Most will eat as much as you give them.
A slimmer Basil
After a few days Basil started to slim down. In the beginning he wasn't happy about it but soon grew accustomed to the new routine. I noticed Basil has more energy, doesn’t have as much gas or intestinal problems. Pet health is the responsibility of the owner and just like being a parent sometimes we have to be tough and do the right thing even if it isn’t easy.
Basil is large for a Boston terrier and had gotten up to 32 pounds; his healthy weight is 28 pounds. Four pounds doesn’t sound like much but when you consider he’s a small dog four pounds makes a lot of difference.
I haven’t taken him in to see what he weighs now but can tell by looking at him that he is back to his old size. He looks like he did before I started over indulging him with goodies to help him take his medicine.
Life expectancy of a Boston Terrier is about 12 years, Basil is almost 13 and his vet thinks he should live even longer since he has excellent teeth.
Giving medicine that isn’t chewable
Some medication isn’t chewable although most of it is for pets. If your veterinarian gives you prescription medication that doesn’t have a flavor you can put it in a piece of lunch meat, cheese or peanut butter. You can hold their mouth open and poke it down their throat but I don’t like to do that if I can keep from it.
Stroking their neck after you've put it at the back of their mouth holding their muzzle closed usually works.
Do not give dogs chocolate, raisins, grapes or onions.
These foods are poison to dogs and can make them very sick. If your dog ingests any of these foods call or take them into your veterinarian immediately or they could die.